Bagger Dave’s burger tavern moving into downtown Grand Rapids

Bagger Dave’s burger tavern moving into downtown Grand Rapids

Bagger Dave's is a self-described "guidepost" for those in search of "the great American burger and craft beer." Photo via

The restaurants of downtown Grand Rapids will soon be getting a new contender in the battle for the burger crown.

Diversified Restaurant Holdings Inc. announced today it plans to open a Bagger Dave's Legendary Burger Tavern on the riverfront at 241 W. Fulton St. sometime in mid-2013.

The new restaurant will be close to the expressway, the B.O.B. and the thousands of students using Grand Valley State University’s downtown campus.

T. Michael Ansley, president and CEO of DRH, said the visibility of such a prime location was an important factor in determining where to put the restaurant. He said the firm signed a long-term lease, paying $11 per square foot for the nearly 4,500-square-foot structure.

DRH calls the Bagger Dave’s chain a “unique, full-service, ultra-casual restaurant and bar,” complete with 30 various toppings and signature favorites like the Sloppy Dave’s BBQ and the Train Wreck Burger.

DRH, Buffalo Wild Wings’ largest franchisee, owns, operates and franchises Bagger Dave’s and intends to add this new location to it’s already growing Michigan team of Bagger Dave’s in Cascade, Grandville and, more recently, Holland.

Ansley said he hopes the Grand Rapids site will be as successful as those in Cascade and Grandville have been. If so, he said Bagger Dave’s might expand again.

“We’re looking at sites . . . Muskegon, Alpine, and Knapp’s Corner, but we haven’t secured anything yet,” he said.

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DRH operates 41 restaurants spread across Michigan, Illinois, Indiana and Florida, with plans to add an additional Bagger Dave's and two more BWW restaurants for 2012.

There are 10 Bagger Dave’s in Michigan, Ansley said, and one franchised in Missouri and another opening next week in Indianapolis.

DRH has an executed area development agreement to franchise Bagger Dave's in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin. DRH operates 31 BWW restaurants, 14 of which are in Michigan.

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